Walk in The Light

As I embrace the end of summer and the beginning of a new school year, I restart my discipline of prayer and medication. I find devotionals help me with this. I discovered one perfect for this transition entitled, Live Brilliantly, https://my.bible.com/reading-plans/11752-live-brilliantly-a-study-in-the-book-of-1-john . It is a devotional that is looking at the the book of John, one of my favorite books. If you enjoy devotionals, maybe you might this one too.

St. John 1:5, writes, “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.” The word, ‘darkness’ in this passage means figuratively spiritual obscurity, i.e. that which blocks the light of God when faith is lacking. An expanded definition suggests that the darkness wants the daylight but has to wait for it to shine bright enough to fill the space with light. This speaks to me because I believe what the human spirit is begging for is light. It wants to love and be loved but it needs someone to fill the void with it. The misunderstanding that exists in humanity is that we hate one another which is darkness. No, we love one another and it will become clearer as we walk in light and love.

The light of God clearly shines but we can miss it. For example, if those who should be spiritual are not reflecting divine characteristics, then His light is obscured. Greed and corruption block light. Others may be fearful and try to hide the light but it can’t be hidden. Regardless don’t be discouraged, if you believe in light and love, walk in the light.

God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.  St John 1:5

Walk in love. Love yourself. Don’t accept the false myth that you need to be like anyone else or that God only loves certain people. God is love and ‘Love’ loves all of us! I appreciate this because it frees us to come together in peace since He doesn’t hate anyone. Light is truth too!

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This way of thinking should not be radical but unfortunately it is. It should not be political or anti-social but it encroaches into the realms of power and the allocation of resources. In order to walk in the light, we must change the belief that we are against one another and war is the solution to every problem. You don’t have to be a Christ follower to embrace love and light. But for those of us who are, it is not good enough for us to just know that the light exists, but to harness the courage to walk in it, to become it. We change every space we enter when we shine.

We are neighbors. We want the same things in life; to live in peace and thrive. We can live this way. How? You start by walking in light and love.


Is ‘normal’ really that great?

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I am feeling the impact of the pandemic very strongly. I am frustrated with the lack of willingness to recalibrate in our society. We want to just pick back up where we left off which is impossible! We have experienced a traumatic event. A million people are dead. Suicide is spiking, over the counter pain medications are being misused. We need to stop and regain our footing. We need to take a moment to refill our souls and heal but our leaders do not see the value of a peaceful, thoughtful reconnection plan. Our economic driven society is saying, ‘get back to work’ as if work heals. It doesn’t. We need to have time to digest what we have gone through.

The trauma of a pandemic should be sufficient to engender contemplation about the value of life but our nation continues to experience senseless violence. When I started this blog several weeks ago, there were two mass shootings; one in Buffalo, New York https://www.cnn.com/2022/05/18/us/buffalo-supermarket-shooting-wednesday/index.html and a second in Laguna Woods, California https://abc7.com/church-shooting-laguna-woods-orange-county-court/11860789/ both have been identified as hate crimes. Last year the FBI noted a surge in such crimes, to the highest levels in over a decade. https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/30/us/fbi-report-hate-crimes-rose-2020/index.html. This weekend there were dozens of mass shootings. There are a lot of hurting people. Hurting people, hurt people. We cannot keep living on the planet with such a reckless disregard for one another. Human beings are the only species who hunt when they are not hungry.

It is very easy to be sad and discouraged but I fight against this mindset. My faith gives me hope and fills me with love and gratitude. I cannot surrender to the ‘dark side’. We have the opportunity to emerge from this pandemic a better version of ourselves. Let’s do it. I am hopeful and looking forward to the future.

Emerging a better person

 but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast. Gen 4:5

I look around my village and see caring, loving people who support one another, whose purpose is to live in peace. It is such a beautiful sight. We must all awaken to this. We are one family of human beings. We are not different. We are not enemies. God doesn’t like any of us better than anyone else. He loves us equally. There is a Bible story about two brothers Cain and Able. Cain killed Abel out of jealousy; he felt God loved his brother more than him. Why would he see killing as a solution? I believe that he didn’t know who he was, his divine purpose; why he was as special as Abel. So his resolution was to destroy the awakened one. We see this throughout history, the assignation of Martin Luther King Jr., John F Kennedy, and Robert Kennedy, among many others, were examples. The empty soul is filled with fear and doesn’t have the courage to do the hard work needed to find their own value. We each must do it, we can do this!

Have Faith in the Future

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I am reading a book written by Nona Jones entitled, Success From The Inside Out’. She writes,

You are a work of art, crafted by the greatest artist in the history of the universe. He created time, the heavens, the earth, every kingdom, genus, and species known and the unknown to humanity. And he created you. Uniquely. You are a one-of-a-kind priceless treasure, but past pain can deceive you into basing your worth on the perceived value of another work of art that’s scrolling by in your Instagram feed or working across from your cubicle. Since there isn’t anyone else on this earth like you, comparing yourself with other people is like comparing the north to the south or the east to the west. They each serve a directional purpose but none is “better” than the others. No one would say, ‘If I had my choice, I would only drive south.’ Your only competition is the person staring back at you in the mirror each day. Only one person is ahead of you in the race of life-the person God created you to be. Catching up requires no longer looking around to see what others are doing. It’s just you versus you. And personal progress is about making sure you win every time.”

I am so inspired by these words. I share them with joy. I have been entrusted with a purpose to imprint this world with myself. I have no duplicate. My only challenge is to see who I am divinely designed to become and to run towards that girl with haste to become her. Why would I want to look backward to regain the person who I was yesterday when I am looking forward at the “phenomenal woman” (Maya Angelou) I am becoming? I don’t want to ‘get back to normal’. Let’s take one step forward and start to create a better world.’


Is there a lost & found for souls?

We experienced another school shooting, this time in Michigan. I sincerely believed that Sandy Hook Elementary School would have been the last one tolerated in this country, the victims being kindergarten students but I was so wrong. “Eight years later, our leaders have yet to prove this child’s truth wrong. Since Sandy Hook, Americans have witnessed, suffered, or died in 2,938 mass shootings. (Childrensdefense.org December 14,2020). .

When the unimaginable happens, like a school shooting, it seems like there should be a resolve to respond immediately. But there has been little movement in the laws. What is even more troubling is that the perpetrators of many school shootings have been young people. How did we get here? A child is born with an innocence, a genuine love for everyone. How did our children arrive at, you hurt me so I kill you? The shooter this week was a high school kid. His parents were alerted but there seemed to be a disconnect between the school and the parents as to the child’s mental state. Clearly the kid was hurting. I ask myself, what happened to this kid? How could murder be the answer to pain? He lost his soul. Where did it go?

School shooting in Michigan December 1, 2021.

Why Oxford High shooting suspect was charged with terrorism: ‘What about all the children who ran, screaming?’ Washington Post

A soul is like a candle, it has the potential to shine and give warmth. When the light is extinguished, or the wick, for example is used up, the light can no longer shine. No one caught, in this case, that the wick was wearing down. I wonder, is there any wick left to reignite? I do not believe this young man understood that human beings are interconnected and interdependent. When you hurt one, the entire human family experiences a trauma. Four high school students lost their lives, the impact is far reaching. All, the wonder, beauty, love, and enjoyment of life that would have come from these exceptional lives is gone. He lost sight of this. I don’t know if your heart is broken, but the loss leaves me breathless. If you understand spirituality, we have all been diminished by this immeasurable loss.

And hope does not put us to shame,

Romans 5:5 NIV

As a Christ follower, I have the luxury of believing in hope. Hope gives me the ability to investigate senseless situations with the expectation that on a divine scale, love and light will emerge somehow. And, let me share a secret with you, every life is a divine light, and as long as love exists, that light will continue to shine. Love doesn’t end. You can’t destroy love. He didn’t know this either.

Self-reflection is a key to igniting the soul. If we are willing to look in the mirror and be authentic, we can hear our inner voice, feel the warmth of the love and see the light that shines through us from it. I turn to my faith and pray,” Help me to not be afraid to respond when I see a soul lost. Help me to be present and listen to the silent screams for help. Help me to sense when someone is in danger of losing their soul. And give me the wisdom to trust myself as I alert others who are skilled and trained to follow up and intervene.” Included in this petition is a silent prayer for myself, ‘Lord never let the lost soul that I am looking for, be mine.

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